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What to avoid if you are experiencing discrimination at work

If you are experiencing discrimination at work, you may feel helpless about how to proceed. Should you simply try to ignore the discriminatory behavior and actions to move forward in your work without rocking the boat? Should you alert your company's human resources department to the issue? Should you quit your job?

Employees ask these and many more questions on a daily basis, and it is important that you get accurate answers if you are one of them. Not knowing how to proceed means that you may make a false move that can create more trouble and stress for you. Here are a few things to avoid doing when experiencing discrimination at work:

Talking to human resources

Although human resources may seem like the right place to take your discrimination claim, the truth is that many times, HR departments look out for the company's best interests, not the employees'. That being the case, sometimes the human resources department is the worst place to go with your concerns. Although it is illegal for employers to retaliate against claims of discrimination, that is what many do. Retaliation can take the form of increased discrimination, demotions and even termination.

Quitting your job

Sometimes the stress of discrimination is so great that it seems tempting and much easier to simply quit your job. However, if you consider potentially pursuing compensation for your discrimination through an eventual lawsuit, quitting could jeopardize your case. The same goes for doing anything to intentionally get fired. Quitting can also put you in a compromised bargaining position as well as shut off your access to unemployment benefits. 

Although it is advisable to avoid the aforementioned actions while experiencing workplace discrimination, one thing that you can and should do is speak to a qualified employment law attorney before taking action. An attorney who works in this particular field advises you about the best course of action based on the particular circumstances of your situation.

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